Succulents. Most common growing mistakes


Growing succulents is not demanding and it is therefore suitable even for complete beginners. They do not need any special care and can live without watering for a pretty long time. However, there are few mistakes that you should avoid when growing succulents. Succulents belong to a wide group of plants that include for example cacti, agaves, and cypress spurge. Thanks to their undemanding nature many succulents are great houseplants but each species may have special requirements and you should know them in order to provide optimal conditions.

Growing in glass

While tropical, humidity and heat-loving plants do well in enclosed glass containers succulents will not grow well in glass containers or similar boxes. Succulents are plants with low water requirements, but they need air flow,good drainage and enclosed containers cannot provide that. You may see people growing succulents in glass but it is usually a temporary decoration. High humidity that develops inside the container and the lack of air circulation make succulents susceptible to fungal diseases and rot.


Photo: Pixabay

Too much attention

Over caring growers often water and fertilize too much. Remember that these are plants living in desert-like environments, so too much care and incorrect amount of nutrients that deviates from the optimal values will not improve the growth. Succulents, like other plants, need water, air, light and nutrients and even though they are adapted to the harshest conditions, they still need certain portion of all the above.The worst thing is too much water as excessive watering makes the plant rot. You are much better off if you provide less water. However, if you totally forget, and fail to provide even little bit of water you may kill your plant. You can tell easily. Leaves start to shrivel. In that case, water little bit.

Wet soil

Succulents can deal with a long-term lack of water but excessive soil moisture will make your plant rot – eventually. Unfortunately, there is no single recipe that would tell you how much water you should provide and when you should water. The amount of water needed depends on the growing seasons, ambient temperature, health and the requirements of individual species.

  • In the summer, you can water regularly and more abundantly. However, no daily and top soil watering where only the top layer of the soil remains moist, while the roots do not get water. You should water regularly and make sure that the water penetrates deep into the substrate. When done, you should remove the excess water from the bowl.
  • When the winter comes water very sparingly but regularly. A lot of growers stop watering succulents completely, especially when they are dormant. Store succulents at cool temperatures.

Lack of light

Most succulents require a lot of light. If they suffer from a lack of sunlight, they begin to stretch and follow the light and that weakens them. You can tell if they change colour or start to fade. Do not place succulents on window sills facing north, where the plants receive little light.

Preview photo: Pixabay

Radek Štěpán

Gardening is my hobby, I have a lot of experience and I am happy to share it.


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